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Steps to a Successful Financial Aid Experience

12 Steps to a Successful Financial Aid Experience


Use the internet application process to file your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).

2. SAR

Be on the lookout for your Student Aid Report (SAR). The U.S. Department of Education emails this to you after the information you put on your FAFSA has been evaluated and analyzed.

3. Review

Review the SAR as soon as you receive it. Read everything on the first page. If corrections are required, submit the corrections to the federal processor as soon as possible.

If you have been admitted into a degree program, you may receive your financial aid tentative eligibility notification approximately one week after ODU receives your record electronically from the US Department of Education.

When you completed the FAFSA, you indicated code numbers for each institution to which you wanted your data sent. Each institution receives an electronic version of your SAR. As soon as the information is processed through the university's computer system, a tentative eligibility notice will be mailed to you. If you are awaiting an admission decision, you will receive your notice letter approximately two (2) weeks after you have been officially admitted into a degree program.

A tentative award notice is an estimate of the financial assistance for which you may be eligible at Old Dominion University. The estimate is based on many factors, including your college grade level, enrollment both semesters, and the results of the FAFSA analysis. Adjustments may be required if corrections are made to the information on your FAFSA.

If you will be enrolled at a different level other than full-time or if your college grade level changes, submit a financial aid adjustment form. Call the financial aid office if you have questions. Contact your financial aid counselor.

4. LEO Online

Review the email notice, logon to LEO Online read and accept the "Statement of Student Responsibility & Conditions for Release of Aid," accept or decline the aid offered.

5. Submit

Submit copies of all documents requested at your earliest convenience. Tax return transcript, w-2's, documents related to marital status and child support arrangements, military Leave and Earnings Statements, proof of citizenship documents, and Social Security documents are the more frequently required documents.

Submit copies of all documents by June 1 in order for aid to be disbursed by tuition deadline.

6. Adjust Aid

It may be necessary to adjust aid once all documents have been reviewed and compared with the original information reported on the FAFSA. Aid may also be adjusted based on grade level, or enrollment level. If so, email notification will be made available. What if I don't have enough money to pay the difference by the "tuition deadline?" The Office of Finance offers a payment plan, for which you may apply each semester. Details are available by calling the Office of Finance at (757) 683-3030. Arrangements for the payment plan should be made prior to the tuition deadline.

7. Summer School?

Summer School financial aid is administered on a case-by-case basis. There is a separate institutional application and an individualized consultation with your financial aid counselor is required. Aid for the summer session is limited. If you enrolled full-time fall and spring, grant eligibility will have been consumed. The deadline for applying for summer is generally May 1.

8. Begin for Next Year

BEGIN NOW to plan for NEXT YEAR. Most students who completed a FAFSA for the previous year will be able to file the application for next year. The priority deadline is February 15. Apply on-line with FAFSA on the web. If you are interested in scholarships administered by the university, please note that your record will automatically be considered. No separate application is required.

9. SAP

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements are a component of financial aid eligibility. Your academic progress will be evaluated at the end of the spring semester and if the GPA or hours completed do not meet minimum requirements, you will be placed on financial aid suspension. If that occurs, you will be notified and an opportunity to appeal will be provided. Review Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.

10. Counselor

Know and contact your financial aid counselor.

11. Other Scholarships

If you receive a scholarship from a civic group, club, church, or other organization, please ensure that the financial aid office receives a copy of your scholarship award notice. The scholarship check should be forwarded by the agency to the financial aid office at the address above. To expedite crediting of the scholarship to your account, please ask the agency to write your name and social security number or University Identification Number on the check.

12. Stay in Touch

Financial Aid is an ongoing process. Regulations and policies are subject to change on short notice. Check your e-mail for updates frequently. Use the Web whenever you can. Visit LEOonline regularly for account information.